29 July 2019
A business CCTV system
is a vital component of your organisation’s physical security. Once installed,
security cameras become the continuous eyes and ears of your site, there to deter
suspicious activity and safeguard important areas, such as entrances, exits and
remote locations, day or night.
But what’s involved in
getting a business CCTV system installed in the first place? What are the
factors that determine which CCTV system is best for your premises? The
following considerations should help you narrow down your security system
options, whether you’re looking to install your first CCTV solution or upgrade
your current one.
Defining the purpose of your CCTV
Before you can decide
on a CCTV system for your business, you need to be clear on exactly what you
require from it. In previous years, security cameras were simply designed to monitor
activity as stand-alone units under manual control, but today’s business CCTV
cameras and systems are capable of far more.
In fact, the term
‘system’ is key; modern CCTV solutions tend to work as part of a wider security network. Security cameras and
the system software that powers them can be integrated with other security
applications, such as alarm management and access control. Rather than
recording surveillance footage on separate storage tapes or hard drives, the
data captured by today’s CCTV cameras can be merged with that from other
systems in order to generate valuable operational intelligence.
So, you’ll need to
consider whether you are looking for CCTV cameras to act simply as a deterrent or
whether your organisation would benefit from the richer functionality of a wider
Regulation and legislation covering
CCTV installation (including GDPR)
Business CCTV system
suppliers are numerous, so how can you differentiate one company from the next?
Looking for marks of independent certification is a good way to separate the
best suppliers, such as that from the National Security Inspectorate
The NSI introduced its
latest update to its Code of Practice for the design, installation and
maintenance of CCTV systems in May 2019 – stating that approved installers
should “comprehensively assess security risks and requirements when designing
CCTV systems and ensure they are fit for purpose, sustainable, functional and
effective” (IFSECGlobal.com). Choosing a CCTV supplier with NSI Gold
certification, like Touchstar, ensures your business will receive the highest
standards of technical expertise and customer service.
There are official
guidelines relating to CCTV for businesses to meet too, so it’s also important
that your business CCTV system provider understands these and can advise you on
them. Since the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) was introduced last
year, the laws surrounding personal data and its usage have become more
stringent and much more defined.
For businesses, there’s
been considerable focus on the kind of personal data often used for marketing
purposes – email addresses, home addresses, demographic information – but, when
people can be identified, images captured by CCTV also count as personal data
too. This means that organisations who already have CCTV in place or are
looking to install it must have a lawful basis, or ‘legitimate interest’ to do
so, such as the prevention of crime for retail or warehouse businesses and/or the safeguarding of staff and visitors
in schools or care homes. You may also have to display signage that
informs people in surveillance areas that they are on camera. Read more on the CCTV Code of Practice from the Information Commissioner’s Office
Improvements in image quality
If your organisation
already has a business CCTV system with analogue security cameras but is
shopping around for another, chances are at least part of the reason for
upgrading is for better quality images. Older, standard-definition cameras may
measure resolution in television lines (TVL) – the number of vertical lines in
a square equal to the vertical height of the picture. These days, the move to
pixel-based resolution has revolutionised CCTV image quality, so there’s no
need to make do with poor footage or unreliable recording.
Better yet, it’s
possible to update your CCTV cameras without having to replace your entire CCTV
system. By simply adding new recorders and new HD or MegaPixel cameras, capable
of zooming in on minute details and internet-enabled for data integration, you
can turn a set of outdated analogue CCTV cameras into part of a wider security
and surveillance network. It pays to keep this in mind if you’re planning to
upgrade your business CCTV system in the near future.
Speak to the experts to find the
right CCTV system for your business
There are several key
considerations to weigh up when sourcing a business CCTV system, but the best
way to find the solution to meet your organisation’s needs is to speak to a
reputable security system provider. Find out how to get in touch with our
friendly team here.
About the Author – Lynden Jones
Lynden joined Touchstar ATC (formally Feedback Data) in a
sales role for Access Control in 2010. Prior
to joining the company, Lynden held both Production and Account Manager roles,
gaining wide technical and commercial experience within the electronics market.
In 2013 Lynden was promoted to Sales Director and in 2017 he
took overall responsibility of the business as
Managing Director. As well as running Touchstar ATC, Lynden still remains
extremely active in the sales and key account management aspects of the
business. When not involved in the business, Lynden is a keen performance car